“Peer-rejection does crooked things to a young girl’s heart.”

As I read this line from Jeanne Takenaka, I sit at my dining room table, nodding. It sure does.

I’m 33, but after enduring a few rounds of peer-rejection as a child, I’m still straightening some of those crooked things out of my heart. Or, more accurately, Jesus is doing the straightening.

The crooked things look bad on paper: insecurity, people-pleasing, perfectionism, low self-esteem.

But in my heart? They draw me because they look safe. They look like a way to make and keep friends. They look like a way to get that coveted stamp of approval.

Is your heart bent out of shape, too? Maybe it was peer-rejection. Maybe it was something else. Whatever it was, I know this “crooked things” struggle is real. But I also know Jesus offers us healing. He offers to reshape and restore our hearts using his gentle, nail-pierced hands.

Jesus didn’t create us to sell ourselves short. He didn’t create us to mimic or please other flawed humans.

This is why I’m so looking forward to the Chosen and Approved Series, in which Jeanne Takenaka, Mary Geisen, and myself will explore those tendencies that look so safe but come at a high price–the price of our own value.

We hope you’ll join us for this six-week series as we hand our hearts back to Jesus once again to straighten those crooked things.

Start here, with this beautiful, heart-felt post from Jeanne, and then join us Tuesdays through November 8th for each new installment. Click here for a list of all the posts that are live so far.

Chosen and Approved: Straightening the heart bent toward people-pleasing – via @novelwritergirl @jeannetakenaka